“The society which has abolished every kind of adventure makes its own abolition the only possible adventure.” Paris, May 1968


Monday, 9 March 2009

New Humanist

I always look forward to the arrival of New Humanist "the magazine of free thinkers". Not that I agree with all of the articles of course, and unless you expect all free thinkers to think the same (don't go there) why should I? There is never a  shortage of stimulating pieces and the current issue is no exception with MICHAIL RYKLIN on Communism as religion, SALLY FELDMAN looking at jealousy, sex and men and FRANCIS BECKETT revisiting the miners strike. 
As I say, I don't always agree with the content but PAUL COLLIERS article on what he calls "coup diplomacy" left me at a loss for words. In a nutshell, what Colliers is suggesting is that the international community can lever democracy into place in African states by guaranteeing governments protection from a military coup and publicly withdrawing this undertaking if elections were thought to be not free and fair. Well you can't fault him for lack of either vision or optimism but the consequences of this idea could be on such a scale that it comes as a relief to know that the major powers are most likely going to be to busy at home to put any of it into practise.

1 comment:

Caspar Melville said...

Hi Ray

I must say I kind of agree with you. At least on first flush Paul Collier's argument looks very worrying indeed (using AfriCom to police African elections. However there is a kind of sense in it - the issue is not actually one of intervention by the west, its of the promise of non-intervention if elections look rigged- I (still) can't tell if this is a brave rational take on a hitherto insoluble problem, or another example of western meddling. Either way I thought it was stimulating enough, and Collier is a very credible and committed player, that it was worth putting out there. Thanks for the plug

Caspar Melville
Editor
New Humanist

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